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Giovedì 18 settembre 2014 - Strasburgo Edizione rivista

9.1. Perecuzione dei difensori dei diritti umani in Azerbaigian
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  Preşedinte. - Următorul punct pe ordinea de zi se referă la dezbaterile privind cazurile de încălcare a drepturilor omului, a democrației și a statului de drept (articolul 135 din regulamentuld e procedură).

Următorul punct pe ordinea de zi este dezbaterea a șapte propuneri de rezoluție privind persecutarea militanților pentru drepturile omului în Azerbaidjan [2014/2832(RSP)].

 
  
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  Ivo Vajgl (ALDE). - Vaša predhodnica na mestu predsedujočega je zamudila priložnost za to, da da možnost za demokratično razpravo, ki bi zaslužila ime „catch the eye”, in mi ni dala besede.

Obžalujem to in upam, da bo ta instrument dejansko postal instrument dialoga v Parlamentu, ne pa deklamacij in monologov.

 
  
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  Preşedinte. - Este prerogativul vicepreședintelui. Mulțumesc foarte mult.

 
  
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  Arne Gericke, Verfasser. - Frau Präsidentin, liebe Kolleginnen und Kollegen! Im Mai 2012 war Baku, die Hauptstadt Aserbaidschans, Austragungsort des Eurovision Song Contest. Motto des Events: Light your fire. Schon damals stand das Land in der Kritik; Menschenrechtsorganisationen beklagen seit Langem Demokratiedefizite. Besonders betroffen sind – wie immer – Frauen, Kinder und ältere Menschen. Erst in den vergangenen Wochen haben Menschenrechtsverletzungen selbst erfahrene Aserbaidschan-Experten erschüttert.

Ich bin froh, dass wir diese Vorfälle hier im Haus benennen und verurteilen. Ich erwarte von der neuen Europäischen Kommission eine klare Stimme für Menschenrechte als unverrückbaren Teil unserer Nachbarschaftspolitik und insbesondere unserer Wirtschaftspolitik.

Es war Anke Engelke, die deutsche Moderatorin des Eurovision Song Contest 2012, die als einzige unter 47 Fernsehprofis den Mut hatte, bei der Punktevergabe Kritik an der Menschenrechtssituation in Aserbaidschan zu üben. Ich zitiere: „Es ist gut, abstimmen zu können. Es ist gut, eine Wahl zu haben. Viel Glück auf deiner Reise, Aserbaidschan! Europa beobachtet dich.“ Ich möchte dem hinzufügen: Menschen und Menschenrechtler in Aserbaidschan, Europa ist auch heute auf eurer Seite. Und uns alle möchte ich ermutigen: Light your fire for human rights!

 
  
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  Alexander Graf Lambsdorff, author. - Madam President, it is good to see you there and I regret that we will not have this opportunity for much longer but congratulations on your appointment.

The situation in Azerbaijan is extremely worrisome. Due to the crisis in Ukraine, the Middle East, Iraq, we have been looking at other places but it is good that we now turn our attention to this country where the situation for human rights defenders has got worse and worse.

The government has intensified its already authoritarian crackdown on independent political and other public voices in Azerbaijan. According to Human Rights Watch and according to Freedom House, the authorities have imprisoned at least 40 political activists, human rights defenders, journalists and others, on various trumped-up charges including drug possession, tax evasion and even treason in the last two years.

In a dramatic escalation since last July the government rounded up the country’s most senior human rights and other public figures, imprisoning them on politically-motivated charges. These include Leyla Yunus, the well-known director of the Institute for Peace and Democracy, and her husband, the historian Arif Yunus, Rasul Jafarov, Chair of Azerbaijan’s Human Rights Club, and Intigam Aliyev, the highly respected Chair of the Legal Education Society. They were all part of a group compiling a comprehensive list of victims of politically-motivated arrests in Azerbaijan. Now they are on that list.

In addition, the governmentʼs already tough restrictions on the activities of non-governmental organisations have been further tightened. Many groups have been effectively forced to shut down after their bank accounts were frozen or their sources of funding blocked.

On the other hand, Azerbaijan is making the most of new opportunities to boost its international profile. In a perverse twist – there is no other word to express it – Azerbaijan in May assumed a prestigious position in Europe’s leading human rights body, the rotating chairmanship of the Committee of Ministers of the Council of Europe, and on 24 June President Ilham Aliyev used his speech before the Council’s Permanent Assembly in Strasbourg to deny any human rights problems and to call his critics liars. Only four weeks later all his critics were proven right.

 
  
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  Josef Weidenholzer, Verfasser. - Frau Präsidentin! Seit 13 Jahren ist Aserbaidschan Mitglied des Europarates, und das ist eine wichtige Errungenschaft für dieses Land und für Europa. Gegenwärtig führt es sogar seinen Vorsitz.

Das Herzstück des Europarates ist die Europäische Menschenrechtskonvention, und an diesen Maßstäben muss sich Aserbaidschan messen lassen. Trotz offizieller Beteuerung hat sich die Situation der Menschenrechte laufend verschlechtert, und der Spielraum von NGOs wird systematisch eingeschränkt. Unter fadenscheinigen Vorwänden werden Menschen, die ihr Recht auf freie Meinungsäußerung wahrnehmen, drangsaliert und zu Haftstrafen verurteilt.

Kommissar Füle würdigte bei seinem Besuch vor zwei Wochen den Einsatz der Zivilgesellschaft angesichts solcher Bedingungen und sicherte die volle Aufmerksamkeit der Europäischen Union zu.

Vor diesem Hintergrund ist unsere Entschließung zu sehen. Sie beschäftigt sich mit einer Reihe von Fällen wie Əliyev und Yunus, wo Menschen wegen ihres Einsatzes für die Menschenrechte verfolgt werden.

Unsere Entschließung ist ein ernstes Warnzeichen: Eine dauerhaftere europäische Perspektive kann es nicht geben, wenn die gegenwärtige Praxis weiter fortgesetzt wird.

 
  
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  Jaromír Štětina, Autor. - Paní předsedající, porušování lidských práv v Ázerbájdžánu je bohužel prokazatelný fakt. Říkám bohužel zejména proto, že je Ázerbájdžán země Východního partnerství, země velmi důležitá pro budování vztahů mezi Evropskou unií a zeměmi jižního Kavkazu. To si uvědomovali autoři předkládané rezoluce, její text je navržen ve vyvážené shodě zástupců všech frakcí. Návrh rezoluce vyjmenovává především případy politických vězňů v Ázerbájdžánu. Dovolte mi dámy a pánové, abych jeden z nich krátce vyzdvihl.

Je to případ vězněného právníka Intigama Alijeva, obhájce politicky pronásledovaných. Pro mě je jeho případ obzvlášť znepokojující. Intigam Alijev totiž před nedávnem v Praze obdržel cenu Homo Homini od nejvýznamnější nevládní české organizace Člověk v tísní (People in Need foundation).

Prosím, dámy a pánové, podpořte tuto rezoluci při dnešním hlasování.

 
  
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  Marie-Christine Vergiat, auteure. - Madame la Présidente, au printemps 2012, des centaines de personnes sont descendues dans les rues de Bakou pour réclamer des réformes démocratiques. Le gouvernement a réagi par une vague de répression dont les effets se font encore sentir aujourd'hui, qui ne cessent même de s'aggraver. Opposants politiques, militants de la société civile, journalistes en sont comme toujours les victimes. Leyla Yunus en est le symbole.

Alors que la tension internationale est focalisée sur l'Ukraine, la tension européenne, je dirai même, le clan au pouvoir croit bénéficier d'une impunité totale, tant il est courtisé en raison de ses fortes réserves en hydrocarbures. L'Azerbaïdjan est lié à l'Union européenne par un accord de partenariat et de coopération et un accord d'association est en cours de négociation. Quel est le sens de ces négociations si elles ne sont pas conditionnées au respect des droits de l'homme?

En Azerbaïdjan, non seulement aucun progrès mais cela régresse sans cesse. Il y a donc urgence à interrompre les négociations, à appliquer strictement l'accord d'association au strict bénéfice de la société civile et à le suspendre si nécessaire. Sinon, tout ce que nous avons dit précédemment n'est que du vent. Là, l'Union européenne a les moyens d'agir, qu'elle le fasse!

 
  
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  Ignazio Corrao, Autore. - Signora Presidente, onorevoli colleghi, la Repubblica dell'Azerbaigian ha attualmente la presidenza di turno del Consiglio d'Europa, l'organizzazione che guida la difesa dei diritti umani e della promozione della democrazia.

La Repubblica dell'Azerbaigian è allo stesso tempo un paese in cui i diritti sono sistematicamente violati, dalla libertà di espressione – in particolare su Internet – alla libertà di associazione e di riunione, un'assurda contraddizione direi. L'Azerbaigian punta a diventare uno dei principali fornitori di gas per l'Europa, quindi dal punto di vista commerciale o energetico-strategico sembra interessarci molto, mentre meno forte è stato finora il nostro interesse per la sua tenuta democratica e per la salvaguardia dei diritti umani.

Notizie di stampa e alcuni rapporti delle organizzazioni non governative più importanti ci informano che ci sono decine di prigionieri di coscienza dietro le sbarre per avere espresso la loro opinione da giornalisti, blogger o attivisti, sulla base di accuse pretestuose e soprattutto senza un giusto processo. Inoltre, otto detenuti tra i diciotto e i trent'anni starebbero facendo lo sciopero della fame per sensibilizzare l'opinione pubblica internazionale.

Chiediamo all'Europa di fare pressioni sul governo azero affinché siano rispettati gli accordi internazionali che ha sottoscritto, incluso quello che gli permette di presiedere il Consiglio d'Europa. L'Europa è il principale finanziatore delle organizzazioni civili in Azerbaigian. Chiediamo quindi che la Commissione monitori l'uso di questi fondi. Devono essere spesi in maniera trasparente ed efficace, altrimenti sarebbe come voltare le spalle a quei ragazzi in carcere che chiedono solo un po' di dignità.

 
  
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  Molly Scott Cato, author. - Madam President, in July we watched with horror as the Azerbaijani Government waged war on its civil society. It has targeted some of the country’s most prominent human rights defenders, imprisoning them on the basis of trumped-up and politically motivated charges. I name in particular Leyla Yunus, Arif Yunus, Rasul Jafarov and Intigam Aliyev. We need a strong condemnation of the detention of Azerbaijani human rights defenders in order to raise their profile and offer them protection, and for the same reason I am proud to say that the Green Group has nominated Leyla Yunus for this year’s Sakharov Prize.

I also note the most recent news that the UN Subcommittee on the Prevention of Torture has decided to suspend its visit to Azerbaijan due to obstructions it encountered in carrying out its mandate under the Protocol Against Torture, of which Azerbaijan is a signatory.

In our own resolution we call for all bogus charges against the human rights activists to be dropped and urge the Azerbaijani authorities to end the practice of selected criminal prosecution and imprisonment of critics of the government. We call on the Azerbaijani authorities to halt all actions aimed at supressing freedom of express and assembly.

In relation to our own EU institutions, we call on the Council and Commission and our High Representative to ask for the immediate release of all Azerbaijani human rights defenders and to apply the ‘more for more’ principle with a specific focus on their situation. We also insist that negotiations towards a new strategic modernisation partnership with Azerbaijan should be put on hold until these minimum steps are taken, and that the advancement of relations between the EU and Azerbaijan should be clearly linked to practical steps by the government to improve its abysmal record.

The case of Leyla Yunus was brought to my attention by a constituent who knows her well and who has told me of the terrible suffering that Dr Yunus is undergoing. It is too personal to be detailed here but it should not be forgotten and it should motivate us to condemn the actions of the Azerbaijani Government in the strongest terms and to demand the same standards of human rights that we ourselves would expect as EU citizens.

 
  
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  Róża Gräfin von Thun und Hohenstein, w imieniu grupy PPE. – Pani Przewodnicząca! Ci z nas, którzy wchodzą codziennie do Parlamentu Europejskiego od strony budynku Rady Europy, widzą ten wielki baner informujący o tym, że Azerbejdżan ma właśnie przewodnictwo w Radzie Europy. Ja chciałabym dzisiaj w tej debacie podkreślić to, jak niezwykle destrukcyjne działania podjęły władze Azerbejdżanu w ostatnich miesiącach i udało im się, wykorzystując zamieszanie związane z konfliktem rosyjsko-ukraińskim, rozmontować społeczeństwo obywatelskie, można powiedzieć, w ciągu ostatnich 2 miesięcy. To społeczeństwo jest tak zastraszone, że nie odważy się dzisiaj wyjść na ulice ani sprzeciwić politycznym aresztom. Niestety reakcja społeczności międzynarodowej jest bardzo słaba. To, co się dzieje w Azerbejdżanie dzisiaj, powinno spowodować np. natychmiastowe powołanie specjalnego sprawozdawcy i potępienie takiego postępowania przez Radę Europy. Od Unii Europejskiej, od naszej delegatury w Baku powinniśmy też wymagać szerszego potępienia tej sytuacji, rozważenia wprowadzenia zakazu wizowego dla niektórych popleczników Alijewa. Tylko taki mocny sygnał mógłby w tej chwili wpłynąć na politykę Azerbejdżanu.

I już na sam koniec chciałam powiedzieć jeszcze kilka słów do biznesu. Różne europejskie firmy (nie chcę tutaj wymieniać ich nazw) zdecydowały się sponsorować pierwsze Europejskie Igrzyska Olimpijskie, które odbędą się w Baku. Oczywiście interes – surowce – jest tutaj ogromny. Ale zastanawiam się, czy te firmy dokonały jakiejkolwiek oceny wpływu tego sponsoringu na prawa człowieka w kraju, zgodnie z zasadami ONZ? Te igrzyska, zdajmy sobie z tego sprawę, zostaną wykorzystane przez Alijewa do promocji kraju i zaprezentowania go w jak najlepszym świetle.

Ostatnie słowo – ta rezolucja jest bardzo dobra, ale niech to będzie dopiero pierwszy krok i angażujmy się dalej.

 
  
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  Kati Piri, namens de S&D-Fractie. – Volgens Human Rights Watch zijn er de afgelopen twee jaar veertig politiek activisten, bloggers, journalisten en mensenrechtenactivisten onterecht achter de tralies gezet in Azerbeidzjan. Voor deze mensen vragen wij hier vandaag aandacht.

Azerbeidzjan is een onderdeel van het Europees nabuurschapsbeleid en een strategische partner van de EU. Juist daarom moeten wij extra kritisch zijn als de gemeenschappelijke waarden waar ons partnerschap op gebouwd is, zo ernstig geschonden worden. De afgelopen maanden is er een ongekende golf van arrestaties gaande tegen mensen die kritiek durven te uiten op de autoriteiten. Onder hen ook, hier al vaak genoemd, Leyla Yunus en haar man Arif, Rasul Jafarov en Intigam Aliyev. Want wat hebben deze mensen eigenlijk misdaan? Zij hebben de principes van de Raad van Europa toegepast en mensenrechtenschendingen aan de kaak gesteld.

Wij roepen de autoriteiten in onze resolutie op om deze politieke gevangenen onmiddellijk vrij te laten en een einde te maken aan de heksenjacht op mensen die opkomen voor universele principes als vrijheid en democratie.

 
  
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  Ryszard Czarnecki, w imieniu grupy ECR. – Pani Przewodnicząca! Mam nadzieję, że będzie Pani świetnym komisarzem i tego bardzo serdecznie życzę, choć oczywiście Parlament Europejski traci znakomitą europosłankę i świetnego wiceprzewodniczącego. Trzymam za Panią kciuki, Pani Przyszła Komisarz!

Proszę Państwa! To ważna debata także dlatego, że zwraca naszą uwagę na kraje Kaukazu Południowego, o których ostatnio mówi się w naszym Parlamencie jakby mniej, a niesłusznie, bo to bardzo ważny region. Region, który generalnie stara się – mówię o społeczeństwach, niekoniecznie o rządach – być jak najbliżej Europy: Europy politycznej, europejskich standardów, europejskich wartości. Spotykałem się wielokrotnie z Gruzinami, Ormianami i Azerami i wiem, że oni w wielu sprawach myślą podobnie jak my. Mam nadzieję, że w przyszłości jak najszybciej będziemy prowadzić debaty również na temat przestrzegania praw człowieka w Rosji, bo o tym też ostatnio jest bardzo cicho, a niesłusznie.

 
  
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  Kateřina Konečná, za skupinu GUE/NGL. – Paní předsedající, s velkou radostí jsem včera poslouchala projev Martina Schulze. Rozuměla jsem mu tak, že Německo potřebovalo více jak 70 let, aby se vyrovnalo se svou tragickou minulostí.

Dnes projednáváme rezoluci o republice Ázerbájdžán, ve které nutíme suverénní stát, aby se za dobu dvou až tří let přizpůsobil od svých kořenů našemu pojetí demokracie. V této souvislosti nemohu a nebudu souhlasit s jakýmkoliv předběžným rozhodnutím, které by mělo posloužit k tomuto cíli. Suverénní stát Ázerbájdžán má právo, aby soudní a výkonná moc měla dostatek času vyšetřit případy porušování lidských práv, ale bez vnějšího tlaku a politických prohlášení Evropské unie. Neobjektivní hodnocení těchto případů nejen v Ázerbájdžánu jsou kontraproduktivní a jsou v přímém rozporu s duchem spolupráce, kterou propaguje Evropský parlament.

Moje poznání Ázerbájdžánu je, že vykazuje více než značnou míru odhodlání a snahy uvést své vnitrostátní právní předpisy do souladu s mezinárodním právem. Jsme povinni kritizovat, ale zároveň respektovat historicko-kulturní souvislosti konkrétních zemí a vést s nimi dialog, a spolupracovat nejen v rámci Benátského komise. Jsem hluboce přesvědčena, že expertní posouzení o souladu vnitrostátních zákonů se skutečnou obhajobou lidských práv je věcí například Benátské komise, ale nikoliv politických deklarací Evropského parlamentu. Chceme-li pomoci Ázerbájdžánu, pomáhejme s reformami, ne s destrukcí.

 
  
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  Ana Gomes (S&D). - Senhora Presidente, junto-me aos colegas na condenação deste ataque contra defensores de direitos humanos e a jornalistas, ativistas políticos, bloggers, ONG, todos aqueles que se batem no Azerbaijão pela democracia, liberdade e pluralidade.

O recurso a procedimentos criminais forjados por fraude, evasão fiscal, traição e outros argumentos é absolutamente inaceitável. Estas pessoas devem ser libertadas imediata e incondicionalmente. As autoridades devem pôr fim à campanha em curso de assédio e intimidação contra organizações não-governamentais e permitir-lhes trabalhar sem restrições, em especial no quadro da Iniciativa para a Transparência das Indústrias Extrativas, portanto por direitos humanos e democracia.

O Azerbaijão tem de realizar sem demora e de forma genuína as reformas de direitos humanos a que se comprometeu junto do Conselho da Europa de que é membro. E para nós, União Europeia e Estados-Membros, não podemos continuar com a política de business as usual relativamente ao Azerbaijão. Temos responsabilidades e obrigações no quadro estratégico da União Europeia para os direitos humanos e a democracia. E por isso é preciso falar com urgência, e nos termos mais incisivos possíveis, contra a repressão em curso no Azerbaijão. As negociações para uma Parceria Estratégica de Modernização com o Azerbaijão devem ser suspensas até que se cumpram as etapas mínimas, e qualquer avanço futuro das relações entre a União Europeia e o Azerbaijão deve estar dependente de medidas concretas por parte do governo para melhorar a situação dos direitos humanos.

 
  
 

Procedura „catch the eye”

 
  
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  Ivo Vajgl (ALDE). - Mislim, da je prav, da se resno ukvarjamo s stanjem človekovih pravic v Azerbajdžanu, tako kot tudi v drugih državah, ki so v primerljivem statusu. Mislim, da je en zaprt borec za človekove pravice in en zaprt novinar, eden preveč. In tudi jaz plediram na oblasti Azerbajdžana, naj kažejo nekoliko več senzibilnosti do človekovih pravic, obenem pa bi rad poudaril, da je Azerbajdžan zelo specifična država, izpostavljena pritiskom tako iz Rusije kot iz Irana, in da je za nas tudi izredno pomemben strateški partner. Mislim, da je prav, da tej državi pomagamo, zlasti pri njenem najtežjem problemu, problemu okupacije Gorskega Karabaha. Na tem nista niti Evropski parlament niti Evropska unija v celoti naredila dovolj.

 
  
 

(Încheierea procedurii „catch the eye”)

 
  
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  Neven Mimica, Member of the Commission. - Madam President, relations between the EU and Azerbaijan are indeed very important, in some areas even strategic. However, they also present us with a number of challenges. Let me highlight two concerns in particular. First, we are witnessing a serious deterioration in the human rights situation in Azerbaijan. In recent months several prominent human rights defenders have been arrested and imprisoned as part of an accelerated crackdown on civil society.

Secondly, this summer we also saw an escalation in the conflict over Nagorno-Karabakh, which registered the most serious breaches of the ceasefire agreement since its signature in 1994. The EU had been vocal in expressing its concerns over these worrying developments, in particular over human rights and the conflict situation.

Human rights have also been raised bilaterally with the Azerbaijani administration. Commissioner Füle and Deputy Secretary-General Helga Schmid did so during their meetings with President Aliyev and with civil society representatives in their recent visit to Baku for the Eastern Partnership informal ministerial dialogue. These issues were also addressed during President Barrosoʼs visit to Baku in June.

In response to the rapidly deteriorating situation we have also triggered our Guidelines on Human Rights Defenders and instructed the EU delegation to offer concrete support to human rights defenders at risk.

The ongoing pressure on independent civil society in Azerbaijan contradicts our common values and the spirit of the Eastern Partnership. We cannot stress enough the importance of a thriving civil society for a thriving democracy and we will keep on reminding our partners in Azerbaijan that the best way to achieve stability and prosperity in the country is through a functioning multiparty democracy, open societies and open economies.

We maintain our offer to base our relations with Azerbaijan on a new, legally binding basis. It will have to be inspired by common values and in particular human rights and fundamental freedoms. We have started negotiating an association agreement and a strategic modernisation partnership. These steps are very important, not least in the context of Azerbaijan’s role in ensuring Europe’s energy security.

The EU recommends that Azerbaijan, which is currently chairing the Council of Ministers of the Council of Europe, reviews its recently amended NGO legislation and takes forward the recommendations of civil society and international organisations to bring the legislation into line with the commitments it has made in the Council of Europe.

We will continue to pass messages to all relevant stakeholders in a spirit of partnership. Following the contact between the Council of Europe’s Secretary-General Thorbjørn Jagland and President Aliyev, we look forward to a meeting of the Joint Committee between the Presidential Administration and representatives of civil society in the presence of a Council of Europe representative. Unfortunately the committee has not been convened in the last six years, so this meeting would be an opportunity to relaunch dialogue between the Azerbaijani authorities and civil society.

 
  
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  Preşedinte. - Dezbaterea a fost închisă.

Votul va avea loc la sfârșitul dezbaterilor.

Declaraţii scrise (articolul 162)

 
  
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  Jarosław Leszek Wałęsa (PPE), in writing. – The issue surrounding the human rights defenders in Azerbaijan continues to grow, as a European institution focused on the rights of all it is our responsibility to intervene in the best way we can. I clearly support the findings of my group and side with them on any interaction they pursue. Persecution of human rights defenders in Azerbaijan [2014/2832(RSP)] clearly outlines the atrocities’ occurring in Azerbaijan and sets forth the action that should be taken by this House. Having had the opportunity to follow closely the trials of prosecuted journalists in Turkey it is quite evident that this situation mirrors the Turkey issue in that journalists are being censored and then prosecuted for what they publish. However the issue in Azerbaijan is even further reaching in that the government is prosecuting those who are attempting to assist the citizens in need. I will continue to follow these events and assist in any way I can as these prosecutions are senceless.

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